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Brussels, 7 July 2009

Commission provides further €2 million in humanitarian aid for conflict-affected people in Georgia

The European Commission has allocated a further €2 million for internally displaced people (IDPs), returnees and affected resident populations in Georgia who still rely on government and international community assistance to meet their basic needs.

Louis Michel, the Commissioner for Development and Humanitarian Aid said: "People affected or displaced by the August 2008 conflict are still suffering the consequences. Our recent assessments show that access to food will remain a problem until the 2010 harvest. This is an important gesture of EU solidarity for suffering communities. The funds will be used to provide food assistance until those affected can regain their livelihoods and produce their own food again."

The funding will be channelled through the World Food Programme, and will include the following:

  • Food aid to returning IDPs living in new settlements, collective centres and host families, as well as to people living in areas not yet been cleared of unexploded ordnance left behind after the fighting;

  • Cash transfers for complementary food to ensure a more balanced diet;

  • Cash for work activities which will also contribute to repairing or strengthening infrastructure and community assets.

The Commission has now allocated a total of €12 million in humanitarian aid in response to the conflict in Georgia. In 2008, immediately following the outbreak of hostilities, the Commission provided €1 million in fast track aid ( IP/08/1256 ) to help the internally displaced within Georgia. Follow-up emergency funding of €5 million ( IP/08/1270 ) was provided to meet basic needs including clearance of unexploded mine, bombs and shells, and psychosocial support. A third decision for €2 million was adopted at the end of 2008 to help returning IDPs over the winter period, and a further €2 million was provided on 17 February 2009 for ongoing relief activities and protection of vulnerable groups.

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